Screenshot 2014-10-06 09.28.50

Canon has a teaser counting down to the impossible – less than 24 hours as of monday morning.  Doubtful that this is camera related – any major announcements would have happened at Photokina. My experience in the past with Canon’s mysterious countdowns and unveiling has always been a let down – sometimes printers, sometimes a new project that has no interest to me- so I refuse to get excited. But, I will keep my eyes and ears open and pass along any info.   This does remind me that we still have no info about the T6i (750D) so I went digging.

It has been very quiet regarding the replacement for the Canon T5i- originally released in March of 2013 and offering only a minor upgrade to the T4i- the time for a replacement is due.  There was some speculation that Photokina would be the place and time but that has passed with just the 7D Mark II announcement.   The next show is PhotoPlus at the end of this month but still no credible information and in fact we are starting to hear that maybe nothing until the second quarter of 2015!!  That would make a 24 month release cycle from the T5i which is longer than any previous version and if we count the T4i as the actual release, since the T4i and T5i are nearly identical, we are talking almost three years!! Crazy!  But what might be crazier is the rumour that the T6i will be the first rebel to feature an electronic viewfinder (EVF) This means it won’t be a dslr. No mirror box, no optical viewfinder. it will be a MIRRORLESS CAMERA!!

T6i Specs (rumoured)

  • Mirrorless Camera
  • 20mp Dual Pixel AF Sensor (updated version of 70D sensor)
  • Digic 6
  • Articulated Touchscreen
  • WiFi
I slapped a T6i on an EOS-M (Canon's currently Mirrorless)
I slapped a T6i on an EOS-M (Canon’s currently Mirrorless)

Many have said that it is just a matter of time before more and more cameras become mirrorless – the design of a DSLR is ancient but has some advantages – many of those advantages have been erased or at least equalled with the advances of technology.  Dual Pixel focus and Digic 6 should allow this to be a fast performing camera and having access to Canon’s huge lens selection is always important.   BUT! I have two questions

Will users looking to upgrade their current camera care that this isn’t a DSLR?

NO, I doubt many users will care if what they upgrade to has a mirror or EVF.  If it has the Canon logo and decent reviews(they don’t even need to be stellar) they will buy when they are looking to upgrade.  I have evidence based on the hundreds of questions I get a week about which camera to upgrade to, many choose Canon despite there being a better option(performance, features and value) from other camera manufacturers.

Is it too little too late to join the mirrorless race?

This is a bit more difficult to answer- past the point of fashionably late to the party(probably always debated by the one who is actually late) but Canon has the lenses and within the camera space the brand Canon carries a huge amount of weight(see the first question above) . When people start to consider upgrading from their P&S or smart phone cameras many seem to consider Canon and Nikon and not much else.  An argument for “too late” – The Sony a6000(my review) is selling well and right now offers everything that the T6i probably will offer.  By the time the T6i actually comes to market we will probably have an a6100 and I wouldn’t be surprised if it offered 4k video. Sony doesn’t have the lens selection but they are working on that and with many higher end models photographers buying into the system at the a6000 level there is reason to see hope and room to grow.

What about Canon’s current mirrorless offering – the EOS-M and EOS-M2(sold in Japan) – The autofocus system isn’t snappy enough to set it apart from P&S cameras and more importantly they used a different mount, making the huge lens selection argument null unless you use an adapter- something you can do with the a6000 or many other models.  The EOS-M was a half hearted attempt at the mirrorless market as was the Canon SL1 – the world’s smallest DSLR – these were poor bluffs at the mirrorless market and it is time for Canon to go all in on mirrorless. Taking the rebel line mirrorless would be just that – all in!

I’d love to know your thoughts. If this is really going to be a Q2 launch – April 2015 at the earliest, too little too late? Always time for Canon? Come back kid (if they aren’t even really down yet)?  Leave a comment or sound off on my Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/Digital.Photo.Recommendations

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Regarding the website they put up I don’t think it’ll be anything about a new camera, rather new printers, or something else, as you said.

    Yet, I do not think they will be the late ones. Sure there’s no 4k, which is more for the indie community, which cannot afford other systems, and to bypass some lens defects. Plus the same customers are always concerned about shooting in the RAW format, that takes some much space (you had to make another video about it), so they don’t really care either about the RAW capabilities, even less the 4k format.
    An evf would definitely help all of them to actually nail their exposures. One thing I missed from my superzoom Powershot SX20 IS was the ability to look through the viewfinder and seeing the simulated exposure. For entry level would be great, upper levels not so much.

    Another thing is that April is still on time for all the summer pictures, months when people usually have more time to spend outdoors and want to take pictures.

  2. If they are going to go mirrorless, I think that it is CRITICAL that they have a viewfinder (EVF). This might seem obvious, but a lot of manufacturers seem to think that this is non-essential, even on high-end cameras. I suppose if you do landscape and macro photography, it might be OK, but there’s no way I’m going to be shooting wildlife with a 400mm or higher lens and using the LCD on the back!

    I used to be in the Olympus camp and waited several years for them to produce a serious m43 camera with a built-in viewfinder, enduring lame (IMHO) Pen model offerings. I finally got tired waiting and jumped ship to Canon. Since then Olympus has come out with the OM-D series and is finally doing things right, IMHO. But it sure took them awhile!

    So if Canon wants to replace their DSLR lineup, or even just their entry-level DSLRs, with mirrorless, I think a good EVF is a necessity.

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